Former high court judge Nirmal Yadav, main accused in the 2008 cash-at-judge's-door case, moved the Punjab and Haryana high court on Thursday by filing a revision petition against the Chandigarh special CBI court's orders and seeking stay on further proceedings of the trial court on framing of charges against her.
The petition came up for hearing before the court headed by justice Sabina, which recused from hearing the case and transferred the matter for hearing by some other bench of the high court.
However, the next date of hearing before the special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) judge, Chandigarh, is on Friday. Since the high court did not grant stay on trial proceedings, the arguments for framing of charges would start in the trial court, where justice Yadav (retd) will have to appear in person.
CBI court order under challenge
The special CBI judge, Chandigarh, had on February 2 dismissed justice Yadav's application filed on January 16, seeking photocopies of the record summoned by the trial court from the registrar general of the Supreme Court and the union ministry of law and justice regarding consideration of the issue of her prosecution sanction.
"All accused and their counsel are at liberty to inspect the record and prepare notes either in hand or through stenographer," the CBI court had stated.
The trial court had said that as per Section 207 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), the accused is entitled to a copy of the police report and other documents. "The second proviso provides that if the record is voluminous, then instead of furnishing a copy thereof, the accused is to be allowed to inspect the record either personally or through a pleader in court.
There is no other provision of law under which the accused can be provided with copies of documents on the basis of which documents forming part of the final report are prepared," stated the CBI court.
Grounds of challenging order in HC
Seeking directions for setting aside the special CBI court order, justice Yadav has stated that once the prosecution and the trial court had no objection in allowing the petitioner to inspect the records, there arises no reason to deny the photocopies.
It has been submitted that the trial court failed to consider that the record was voluminous and it is therefore not feasible to take a handwritten note or to dictate the entire record.
The petition also mentions that provision of the proviso to Section 207 of the CrPC is directory and not mandatory in nature and the trial court is well within its discretion to grant copies of the relevant record. It has further been added that the trial court lost sight of the fact that no party would have been prejudiced in case copies of the record were supplied to the petitioner.
The petitioner has also taken the ground that the non-supply of photocopies of the relevant documents to her at the cost of the petitioner is violative of the principles of natural justice.
She has also contended that she would only be able to assist the trial court in a better way if she also has a copy of the record.